“Your value to those around you hinges upon only one thing: your personal alignment with Source.” Abraham via Esther Hicks
After he became the person we know as Buddha, Siddhartha was welcomed as a wise man and story teller. He travelled far and wide at a time when speaking was what there was; we were years from leaflets, books and blogs.
The story in the symbols atop Buddhist monasteries ( I took this in Bouda, one of the Buddhist sections of Kathmandu) is that Siddhartha meditated to study the wheel of life and when he was able to find words for all he had learned, the deer were the only creatures who would listen.
These sweet creatures helped him hone his mind and heart, gave him courage to be who he was, as connected as he was. No more, no less, just as they are. Siddhartha was able to realize his own nature in the study of the natural world. He couldn’t expect the deer to understand or go forth with his lesson. He couldn’t blame them for not or praise them for what they were doing. He could recognize them for who and what they were. And he could do the same for himself.
Basically that’s it. The beginning and end of Buddhist philosophy. Simple and really really hard – lots of attention to what is present, no making up stories, check your facts over and over with your heart, say only what is true and useful. The useful bit implies intention. If you notice your intention, you probably won’t hurt anything and the deer will want to be with you.
Please let me be the person my dog thinks I am.
Animals are so wise:
this one is called, “When I was pregnant with my mother.”
I think we are called to families where it is often hard to see why we are there. It’s a lifetime for me of wondering and awe how I came to make the choice I had to make to end up where I am.
All choices, all angles, all around.
As much as I always wanted to be somewhere else when I was young, I never could really fathom what that would be like and tended to cling to what I knew no matter.
What would I do in your family? No clue.
So I’ll take a moment to revel in mine. It does kind of fit by now. Yours too?
AKA: Universe, My World, What I Want.
Let me roil and thrash with attitude. Let me appreciate all the smells. Let me revel in the autonomy of the day, of night, wind, rain – all natural constants.
Let no other intrude upon me when I need to make my own way.
Let the sky fall wheresoever it will.
Let me appreciate its landing and my place in it.
For this and every other thing I know or don’t
For all above and below, side by side, tethered and free
Let it Be. Let it Be.
Within me the light is strong and the time is here. Now.
Our walk this morning included an unexpected excitement. Scads of horses and trailers, riders and dogs just a few hundred yards from our path. The hunt was on. Jules had never seen so much commotion! He raced to it and halfway there I called him back. This is a shot of his return to me. Joyous, finding deep satisfaction every moment. I love Jules. He is my idol on this morning and so many others.
photo thanks to Paula
Looking up at the Hagia Sophia when we were in Turkey recently and entering the enormous doorway reminded me both how small we are and how powerful.
After all it was built by us (humans) and a very long time ago. These structures let us lift our eyes to the heavens for no other reason than to see them. We cannot miss the sky when staring at the height of this magnificent edifice. Of course across the way is the Blue Mosque built some time later and meant to be bigger – it is.
All our dogs strive to be the highest peers, Liam practically turns himself over to “cover” the pee of Jules or Cho – who also does as high an arc as he can manage. Sometimes when I see the female singers of today stagger on the highest heels they can’t manage I wonder if something like that is going on. No Ginger Rogers here, a level of competence overshot.
But if we feel too little or too big, if we don’t want to be counted in the animal kingdom, think again, we need to prepare ourselves for ourselves. I am mindful that we look as if we are holding the reins in this world but I think we are far from that much control. We don’t escape the workings of the planet and sometimes we are just like the Galapagos Tortoise*,who I have witnessed in battle, winning because we happen to be standing on a rock. Next time the rock may evade us.
According to the San Diego Zoo: When threatened, the tortoise pulls itself into its shell with a hiss. The hissing sound is just the tortoise letting air out of its lungs. If a fight breaks out among males, the tortoises face each other with ferocious glares, open their mouth, and stretch their head as high as they can. Whoever reaches the highest wins, even if he is much smaller overall than the other male! The loser pulls his head in with a noisy hiss, and the battle is over. To us, this looks like they’re just putting on a show; but it’s a serious matter to the tortoises, especially in the wild, where fights occur over mates or a specific food item or clump of food. – See more at: http://animals.sandiegozoo.org/animals/galapagos-tortoise#sthash.0qhSCumT.dpuf
I love this time of year. Just for what it is. Not the promise of anything. Probably because it does precede winter. Nothing to do about that. The harvest feels like a long-awaited treasure finally ready to open. Yes, some in the garden – Jerusalem artichokes, potatoes, beets – sweet roots growing all summer. And I include us as humans who learn as we get older – and yes, I know that is a choice and not surety. I find in speaking with clients whom I have worked with a long time I get to open the deepest roots, show colors and dendrites only time can give us.
Lots of vegetables and some fruits bloom and last all year, even some flowers still bloom and I notice there are a few dandelions giving off their blouncy seeds at this time. Just as the new spring brings promise of all to come, so does the deep of this time presage the wisdom of experience, the awakening of the light as it wanes.
The lively world of our emotions, fears and responses is like a great forest with its fauna. We experience those feelings as though they were wild animals bolting through the foliage of our thick being, timidly peering out in alarm or slyly slinking and cunningly stalking, linking us to our unknown selves… Paul Shepard
The wrangler, the poet, the fireman
all live in the animal world of the amygdala,
Connection takes more thought, perhaps involving
the cortex, but who’s counting?
all images and poems Pam White
Up on the limestone banks the patterns I see are centuries lived
by no one I know. Small bugs and sea creatures, occasional fish
tell me life was different, that I wouldn’t be able to breath here as I am.
But I breathe here as they did once. I walk upon land they knew
as water and the water I look to, the river, creates canyons in
what they knew as air. I don’t feel close to their remains even
as I sit bone to skeleton. They escape my ability to grasp so many years
even as I watch the crow fly who perhaps has known them as
well as me. The sun I know has seen all, even as I watch it set.
Way up by the river bend at its very tip
is called Beau Rivage, beautiful shore.
Here you can see across the river to its
farthest bank and down to where the bridge
crosses and up across to where the factory pushes
smoke twelve to fourteen hours a day.
To get here I had to cross the mouths of caves, go
through tangles of crooked, thorny vines, release myself
to the rhythm of the limestone cliffs and flats
The river’s edge keeps me to the rock.
I know the pull of the current, the water thrusting
around a rock, curling to the banks in a whirling pool
where I lose my senses. I keep to the rocks
whose contours suckle my bare feet, whose sandy flats
give me my wit, whose ancient sea is my core.